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Can't decide on skis for 8yr old - please help! [Afton Alps, likes park]

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I, myself, don't ski (yet - my husband is on my case about learning) - but we are looking to purchase skis, bindings and boots for my son who is 8 1/2 (60lbs). This will be his 3rd year skiing and we have previously leased. However, as he has been skiing more frequently each winter (12-15x last winter - will be quite a bit more this year) and spending more time in the park trying to get air or do rails we want to move on to purchasing. He is a good skier - I would say intermediate - he has no fear whatsoever and he LOVES going as fast as possible. We'd like to stay under $500 for skis, bindings and boots and there are some good deals out there right now it seems. Was looking at the Line Gizmo, some Armada, Volkl... - I feel like I've been looking at skis until my eyes are crossed so would love some input! 

Thanks!!!

post #2 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JlHer View Post
 

I, myself, don't ski (yet - my husband is on my case about learning) - but we are looking to purchase skis, bindings and boots for my son who is 8 1/2 (60lbs). This will be his 3rd year skiing and we have previously leased. However, as he has been skiing more frequently each winter (12-15x last winter - will be quite a bit more this year) and spending more time in the park trying to get air or do rails we want to move on to purchasing. He is a good skier - I would say intermediate - he has no fear whatsoever and he LOVES going as fast as possible. We'd like to stay under $500 for skis, bindings and boots and there are some good deals out there right now it seems. Was looking at the Line Gizmo, some Armada, Volkl... - I feel like I've been looking at skis until my eyes are crossed so would love some input! 

Thanks!!!


Welcome to EpicSki!  You might also ask on TheSkiDiva.com and see what the Divas suggest.

 

It usually helps to know what region is involved.  Are you thinking of buying new or is waiting until the ski swap season in the fall an option?

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 


Welcome to EpicSki!  You might also ask on TheSkiDiva.com and see what the Divas suggest.

 

It usually helps to know what region is involved.  Are you thinking of buying new or is waiting until the ski swap season in the fall an option?


We were thinking we'd buy new - we also narrowed our sights on the Faction Candide 1.0 jr. - any thoughts on this? My son would be able to get two seasons out of it at the 125cm length. We are in Minnesota and are season pass holders at Afton Alps which is now part of Epic. We live only 15min from them - so it's nice and convenient! If you think the Faction is a good call - what would you recommend for bindings? We'll take our son to a local shop for boot fitting. 

post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JlHer View Post
 

We were thinking we'd buy new - we also narrowed our sights on the Faction Candide 1.0 jr. - any thoughts on this? My son would be able to get two seasons out of it at the 125cm length. We are in Minnesota and are season pass holders at Afton Alps which is now part of Epic. We live only 15min from them - so it's nice and convenient! If you think the Faction is a good call - what would you recommend for bindings? We'll take our son to a local shop for boot fitting. 

While getting good boots makes sense to me, I'm not sure it's worth getting new skis.  Especially since your son wants to spend more time skiing park.

 

Let's see if parents in MN will stop by.  Paging @focker , @midwestfabs .

 

May be worth browsing through last season's thread for MN.  I know there are members who ski at Afton Alps.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/142413/calling-all-minnesota-epicskiers-2015-2016

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 

While getting good boots makes sense to me, I'm not sure it's worth getting new skis.  Especially since your son wants to spend more time skiing park.

 

Let's see if parents in MN will stop by.  Paging @focker , @midwestfabs .

 

May be worth browsing through last season's thread for MN.  I know there are members who ski at Afton Alps.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/142413/calling-all-minnesota-epicskiers-2015-2016


Definitely would like the input - I was under the impression these were really good park skis? My middle son can get two seasons out of them and then actually we have a younger son they would be passed down to - so they would be used for quite a few years which is another reason we leaned with getting new. I'll look forward to seeing if someone from MN can chime in ~ thank you!! 

post #6 of 9

My suggestion is don't over think it....does your son like the skis?  As long as they're the right kind of  ski for the intended purpose - it'll say so on the ski manufacturer web site or any web site selling the skis - than let your son pick the ski that he thinks is the coolest.  At 8 yrs old - that's the most important.  Sounds like your looking at decent brands, so wouldn't worry to much about it.  Good idea to buy new at this time of year - better deals, plus with a younger one to pass the skis on to, you'll get your $'s worth.  I have 3 sons, now 17 through 22 and bought new for the older and passed them down. At that age, getting 2 years out of them is about right. Skis measured to their eye brows / forehead when I bought them, 2 years later just under their chin and time to pass them on.  But definitely, layout the options for them (based on your $ budget) and let them decide from there. That's worked for my kids - all grown up - almost.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILOJ View Post
 

My suggestion is don't over think it....does your son like the skis?  As long as they're the right kind of  ski for the intended purpose - it'll say so on the ski manufacturer web site or any web site selling the skis - than let your son pick the ski that he thinks is the coolest.  At 8 yrs old - that's the most important.  Sounds like your looking at decent brands, so wouldn't worry to much about it.  Good idea to buy new at this time of year - better deals, plus with a younger one to pass the skis on to, you'll get your $'s worth.  I have 3 sons, now 17 through 22 and bought new for the older and passed them down. At that age, getting 2 years out of them is about right. Skis measured to their eye brows / forehead when I bought them, 2 years later just under their chin and time to pass them on.  But definitely, layout the options for them (based on your $ budget) and let them decide from there. That's worked for my kids - all grown up - almost.


Thank you so much for the reply!! My son loves the faction ski's best which is what made us start looking into them. We did exactly what you said and showed him a lineup and let him pick. The skis will measure to his forehead this season and pending what he grows this year - should be just where you said for year 2 - about chin length or so. Then our youngest will get them so seems like a good 'buy'. Plus, right now we can get them on sale :yahoo: I think I'll go ahead and purchase the factions while they still have his size and then go on the hunt for bindings - seems all of the marker bindings I'm seeing are also hugely discounted right now too! Does seem like a great time to buy! Thanks again!!

post #8 of 9
Hoiggards and Joes probably have the biggest selection of kids skis.

Hoiggards tent sale is in sept, towrds the end i believe. They are also owned by vail, so by having season pass you can sometimes get some discounts as well. Before you mount bindings if you have already bought the 'cool' skis, i would wait if for tent sale. They also have a good buy back program that we have used eveytime we have had to upgrade skis, boots etc.

Pierce and hitempo would be the place to go if boots are in question, especially for adults. Hoiggards boot fitters are good, but pierce and hitempo are outstanding. Kids ski selection at both is not as vast.

Hoiggards doesnt start puting out all there ski stuff until after the tent sale. Not sueabout when joes sporting does. Pierce and hitempo will prob have bit more selection now since that is ther businees for the most part.

Personally we have gone to hoiggards for kids skis just because of the selection, buy back program, and at the tent sale you can find new and barely used skis for good prices.

Also, for you, since your prximity to afton they have a great all womens ski lesson package you should look into. I did the boys version few seasons ago and it was fun, instructora they use are more veteran., and is for all levels of skier.
post #9 of 9

An alternative to buying right now would be to wait for the Afton ski swap in early October. This is not all used equipment. Hoiggards will bring in a good number of last years skis with really good pricing to move them out of inventory. Several other ski shops usually have some old inventory available as well. However, you never know what will be there. Also, for best selection you have to be there Friday afternoon or Saturday morning because the good stuff goes fast. There will even be people there from Hoiggards and the Afton ski school to help you with selection. This bares careful consideration because after a good year in the park a pair of skis might not be in the greatest of shape to hand down to a little brother.

Boots should be considered the most critical piece of equipment. If you really want to stay in that $500 budget boots should take at least $300 of that. So, shopping the ski swaps and tent sales becomes more important. However, since kids even into the teens grow so much, a season lease on boots is a really great option. The boots can be sized for a snug fit and then if their feet grow you can swap them for a larger size. Having a good fit is just as important in the park as it is in the race course.

If your shopping at Joe's ask for Jim Heldt. He was the ski school director at Afton a few years ago and earlier ran Otto Hollis ski school. As a result you couldn't find a more knowledgable person on skis and boots. Unfortunately I don't know anyone at Hoiggards.

If your son is interested in expanding his knowledge and abilities there is a program at Afton called the All Mountain Team which exposes kids to the park and all other areas of skiing. There are also programs dealing specifically with free style. The Ski School will have an information table at the ski swap so it's a good place to get information on programs.

 

You absolutely should take lessons or even get into one of the Programs. Women's Academy is a six week program for all levels, even beginners. The groups are only women and are taught by women instructors. These groups usually meet Tuesday mid day or Sunday mornings. The women I know how have done the Academy all love it and usually sign up several years in a row moving up in ability each year. These groups are as much a social gathering as they are a ski lesson. There is a Mens Academy but it's not as popular as the Women's, I think it's a guy thing.

 

Enjoy the upcoming season.

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